Sci-fi is a genre of fiction that frequently evokes images of beautiful scenery, inventive designing, and surreal landscapes. Whether Science Fiction for you is a passive interest, deep obsession or foundational influence in your craft, it is wise to delve into Science Fiction art if only to exercise the limits of your imagination.
Great franchises such as Star Wars, Star Trek, Mass Effect, Battlestar Galactica, Stargate and others prove to be very entertaining. All of these great films required great amounts of concept art, the development of practical effects, sets, puppet design, makeup, CGI…you get the picture. Out of all genres of movies, video games, and television, science fiction is arguably the genre that relies heaviest on concept art, and with good reason – the designs are out of this world!
Here are some Photoshop tutorials designed to get those creative juices flowing and imaginations running wild.
Design an Epic Sci-Fi Style Urban City Scene in Photoshop
Here’s a great Photoshop tutorial for designing an epic Sci-Fi styled Urban City Scene. This one is intriguing to go, particularly for the split down the middle that offers the color contrast for the left and right sides. There is also that thematic contrast, one side very hot and chaotic, the other side looking quite cold and relaxed, with a hint of melancholy as if it’s after the dust has settled from the great cataclysm on the left. While this tutorial dates all the way back to 2010, the comments clearly show it’s a great tutorial to experiment with even 4 years later. This tutorial was made by James Qu.
Create Spectacular Sci-Fi Concept Art Using Digital Painting Techniques – Walkthrough of “The Day We Left Earth” by Grezogorz Butkowski
This tutorial is highly useful in getting some insight into digital painting techniques. It is a walkthrough of the creation of “The Day We Left Earth” by Grezogorz Butkowski. The image itself evokes nostalgia for the sci-fi games and movies of the recent past, like the Mass Effect trilogy and of J J Abrams modern take on Star Trek. This tutorial goes very in-depth into various Photoshop techniques and methods, especially those pertaining to digital painting. You’ll see how Grezorgorz started with a concept sketch, then implementing the rules of composition and perspective and gradually add detail and character to the image.
Making of Urban by Pierre Fabre
Making of Urban features a lot of really cool photo manipulation techniques to capture that post-apocalyptic grittiness that was prevalent in 70s and 80s science fiction and horror films. Pierre Fabre’s finished piece is also reminiscent of modern horror, as it definitely sparks nostalgia for the films “The Road” and “I Am Legend,” in particular. What’s really cool about this tutorial is a picture showing all the added effects (such as water, rubble, building hedges, and characters) without the city layer underneath. It’s a great perspective on Photoshop design for beginners.
Create Sci-Fi Poster Art
This tutorial by Fabio Sasso will teach you how to make a compelling sci-fi movie poster using Photoshop’s blend modes and filters. The example poster is a very intriguing design which almost feels like a retro sci-fi picture (from the 70’s or 80’s) with a modern, digital twist. There’s even a nice little tip on how to use a stretched out “V” to make a futuristic looking “A” – simple, yet effective.
How to Create a Retro Sci Fi Game Poster
Here’s a tutorial that Photoshop designers who are into gaming will absolutely love. This tutorial by Blog Spoon Graphics will show you how to make an awesome art piece highly reminiscent of old school game covers in the late 80’s and early 90’s. It conjures nostalgia from the Super Nintendo and Sega Genesis era, when the graphics of the game would be represented by colorful concept art on the covers.
Concept Art: Create A Sci-Fi Interior Using Digital Painting Techniques
Here is yet another Sci-Fi Photoshop tutorial that focuses on digital painting techniques. You will start with a rough sketch and later implement various techniques and practices to add detail and rich, vibrant character to your design. This Photoshop tutorial was made by Gavin L. It is important as artist to stretch our capabilities, and a great way of doing just that is going beyond photo manipulation and learning to digital sketch and paint.
With these 6 Science Fiction tutorials for Photoshop you’ll see a wide variety of techniques implemented, from photo manipulation to digital painting. Why not utilize all 6 of them? Take each tutorial and learn some new Photoshop knowledge of each, whilst simultaneously challenging your brain to come up with unique and vibrant Science Fiction concepts. Have at it and, happy designing!